The Houston Dynamo has hired Paulo Nagamura to be the team’s next manager, the club announced on Monday.
Nagamura, 38, replaces Tab Ramos, whose contract wasn’t renewed following the 2021 season. The search was conducted by new Dynamo GM Pat Onstad.
“This is a magnificent opportunity. Ownership and club leadership are committed to building a team that will truly make our fans proud. I am thankful that Ted Segal, Lyle Ayes, John Walker and Pat Onstad entrusted me with this role at a turning point for the Club,” Nagamura said. “As a player, I watched Pat and previous Dynamo teams lift MLS Cups, win conference championships and I understand the responsibility that comes with this role. That is the bar, and I will work tirelessly to help the Dynamo return to the top tier of MLS.”
Novo ano, novo Dynamo.
— Houston Dynamo FC (@HoustonDynamo) January 3, 2022
Nagamura was most recently manager of Sporting Kansas City‘s reserve side. In four seasons as Sporting Kansas City II manager, Nagamura recorded a record of 30-61-25, as the organization focused on youth development. He also served as an assistant with the team in 2017. During his time with the team, the Brazilian coached 15 of the organization’s homegrown players, as well as 23 academy products. Included in this group is current Venezia and United States international midfielder Gianluca Busio.
“I am proud to welcome Paulo Nagamura to the Houston Dynamo Football Club,” said the club’s majority owner Ted Segal. “Paulo was known as a fierce competitor during his playing days and that competitiveness has carried over into his coaching career. He is a talented, high-potential coach who we believe will relate well to our players and help instill the type of culture we are working to create.”
As a player, Nagamura came up through the youth systems of Sao Paulo and Arsenal before signing with the LA Galaxy in 2005, where he won an MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup double. He later went on to play for Toronto FC, Chivas USA, and Liga MX side Tigres, before finishing his career with SKC.
With SKC, Nagamura won two more U.S. Open Cup titles as well as another MLS Cup crown in 2013. Overall, he made over 270 appearances, scoring 15 goals.
Nagamura becomes the fifth full-time head coach in club history, following Dominic Kinnear (2006-14), Owen Coyle (2015-16), Wilmer Cabrera (2017-19) and Ramos (2020-2021). He becomes the third Brazilian-born coach in MLS history and will be the second-youngest among active MLS head coaches.